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Stepping into character, the alter ego effect

Have you ever closed your eyes and imagined how a scenario will play out before you enter the race? Or played a character in a board game? Maybe a detective or policewomen. I’m sure as a child you may have played many different characters. I know I did. I also pictured the steps my hero would take before stepping out to run a big race.
Picturing your steps and taking action on those steps is one way to reach your goals. However, sometimes there is something that holds you back. One way to push through is to get into character. Just like superman go into his super outfit and used his superpower. Develop your alter ego that helps you achieve your goals.

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The hero within you, the positive alter ego.
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Recently I heard a podcast in which Todd Herman was talking about his book the ‘The Alter Ego Effect“.

The power of an alter ego?

The alter ego sounds like a great way to move forward towards your goals. I know it will help with mine. The way Todd explained it in its basic form on the podcast sounded too simple to be true. Yet, I can see how it could be.

Todd explained that he purchased a pair of glasses and put these on to feel more confident to go about his new business as a coach. He said he felt that he looked too young, for he was young so he created a mask of confidence by wearing glasses. Similarly, he spoke of his sporting days when he visualised two of his biggest fans and placed their cards in his shoulder pads. It was his way of playing well as he would activate his goodness as not to let them down.

I can see how this alter ego effect works. As when we are children we played dress ups and when playing a character I know I always found strength and courage to do what needed to be done. Yet, out of character I felt like I couldn’t achieve the results.

Todd also spoke on the podcast about a study group with children and the language and mannerisms they took to a task in and out of character.
Just imagine that for a moment, when you were a child in character. Did you talk differently? Did you act differently? Of course when in character we play the character. We know straight away what character we’d be.
As a child my son had two superheroes he loved, Spiderman and buzz lightyear. However, the alter ego characters are more than a fictional hero, they are personal, and you may know them well.

Design your Alter Ego to help you achieve your goals.

When thinking about how to design an alter ego to help, I thought of a few mentors I currently have. Even some mentors I have had. Yet, with my current goals I know I need special characteristics and strength.
Maybe you can think of someone straight away. Maybe you need to list the characteristics you seek and need time to think who could be your alter ego.

I pretended to be somebody I wanted to be until finally, I became that person. Or he became me.

Cary Grant

In the podcast, Todd mentioned a special someone that many entrepreneurs draw too as their character to help be the mum they want to be for their children. After he revealed who this person was, I wasn’t surprised. In fact, it made perfect sense. To find out who mums draw inspiration from, listen to the podcast.

Todd Herman quote 'It's not about faking it at a behavioural level. What it's doing is drawing out the natural abilities that you do have that are lying dormant.
It’s not about faking it at a behavioural level. What it’s doing is drawing out the natural abilities that you do have that are lying dormant.

An alter ego is not faking it.

In life, I’ve had an alter ego before, but hadn’t called it that. I would call on strength from my mentors by imagining what would they do and how would they tackle the particular task. I had never gone to the point of wearing a cape or putting on a special pair of glasses. However, I do find that even just wearing different clothes can result in different reactions to situations from myself and to myself.

The Todd Herman quote says it all about not faking it. ‘It’s not about faking it at a behavioural level. What it’s doing is drawing out the natural abilities that you do have that are lying dormant.
All too often lack of achievement is from not activating the power we have within. Not using the talents we have and not trusting in our own abilities. Put on your imaginary cape and use the skills and abilities you do have to achieve your goals.

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The alter ego effect is definitely a book I’ll be reading as I can see how it can help with becoming all you need to be to achieve goals in life. Have you read the book?

If it works for top athletes, why not for you and me.


Lifestyle Anytime

Angie blogs about setting goals and mastering habits as well as productivity and living abroad. She started blogging while learning the skills to start an online business. Her goal to work online came about due to wanting to see overseas family and travel around Australia. Her mission is to help others succeed with their goals. Angie often shares tips and tricks while walking the beaches or near the lake on the Central Coast NSW Australia. 

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